MIIT Published New Notice on Improving the Development of China’s Mobile IoT


  1. The current situation of China’s mobile IoT.

By the end of 2019, China has established more than 700,000 base stations. The number of mobile IoT connections in the entire network has exceeded 1 billion, of which the number of narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) connections has exceeded 100 million. Large-scale applications such as smart water meters, smart gas meters, and smart smoke sensors are constantly emerging.

  1. The challenges of China’s mobile IoT.
  • NB-IoT applications need to be further popularized. At present, most of the NB-IoT connections in China are concentrated in a few cities, while base stations in other regions have light loads, or no load at all.
  • The proportion of advanced mobile communication technologies in IoT connections needs to be further improved. Compared with advanced technologies such as NB-IoT/4G/5G, the spectrum utilization efficiency of 2G/3G technology is lower. However, among existing stock IoT connections, 2G/3G connections still account for a large share, and the proportion of new IoT connections is also close to 20%. It is also necessary to accelerate NB-IoT, 4G (including LTE-Cat1, that is, 4G Category 1 Networks), and 5G to support the development of various IoT connections.
  • NB-IoT network coverage needs to be further improved. The coverage level of NB-IoT networks in some areas cannot fully meet the requirements of carrying 2G connection migration, and the coverage depth in some areas should be strengthened as needed.
  1. Why did MIIT publish the Notice?

In order to accurately grasp the global development trend of mobile IoT technology standards and the mobile IoT industrial landscape, and to promote the migration and transfer of 2G/3G IoT services. At the same time, to establish the integrated development ecosystem of NB-IoT, 4G (including LTE-Cat1) and 5G mobile IoT.

On the basis of deepening 4G network coverage and accelerating the construction of 5G networks, NB-IoT will be used to meet the needs of most low-rate scenarios,4G LTE-Cat1 will be used to meet the needs of medium-rate IoT and voice calling, and 5G technology will be used to meet the requirement of high-speed, low-latency networking.

  1. Development goals of China’s mobile IoT.

By the end of 2020, the NB-IoT network will achieve full coverage in main urban areas of cities above the county level, with deep coverage in key areas; the number of mobile IoT connections will reach 1.2 billion; promote the NB-IoT module prices to match the prices of 2G modules, and guide new IoT terminals to migrate to NB-IoT and Cat1; create a batch of NB-IoT application benchmark projects and NB-IoT million-scale connection scale application scenarios.

  1. Key working tasks of China’s mobile IoT development.
  • Network construction. Accelerate the improvement of the deployment of mobile IoT networks, increase the deployment of NB-IoT networks, deepen 4G network coverage, accelerate the construction of 5G networks, support the development of LTE-Cat1, and encourage existing 2G/3G IoT services to migrate to NB-IoT/4G/5G networks. Build a collaborative and complementary mobile IoT network to meet the network coverage requirements in different scenarios.
  • Standards and technology research. Accelerate the development of mobile IoT and vertical industry integration standards, and promote the integration of NB-IoT standards into ITU IMT-2020 5G standards. At the same time, promote the formulation and implementation of technical standards for mobile IoT terminals and platforms to improve the standardization of industrial manufacturing, smart homes, logistics tracking and other fields.
  • Mobile IoT applications. Focus on the three major directions of industrial digitization, intelligent governance, and intelligent life, and promote the innovative development of IoT. Extensively collect practical cases to build a mobile IoT resource library, select high-quality cases to create pilot demonstrations, and enhance the depth and breadth of mobile IoT applications.
  • Mobile IoT industry. Accelerate the research and development of new-generation mobile IoT chips, modules and other products, promote module cost reduction, and promote industrial-scale applications; support basic telecommunications companies to build mobile IoT connection management platforms, and guide industry application companies to build a vertical industry application platform that can achieve intelligent equipment integration, equipment and data management, and system operation and maintenance; encourage capable enterprises to build open laboratories to form a development pattern that integrates the development of large companies and SMEs; support the development of mobile IoT network quality assessment; support mobile communication resale enterprises to carry out mobile IoT business innovation.
  • Mobile IoT security. Strengthen mobile IoT security protection and data protection by establishing security management mechanisms, strengthening security monitoring, supporting research of network security core technology, and conducting product security evaluations. Establish frameworks of mobile IoT security standards and increase research on security technology to consolidate the basic security of mobile IoT.
  1. Main application scenarios of China’s mobile IoT.
  • Production-oriented IoT facing the supply side. Industrial IoT which was formed by the integration of IoT with traditional industries such as smart industries, smart agriculture, and smart meteorology. Industrial IoT has become the infrastructure and key element required for industry transformation and upgrading.
  • IoT systems for smart cities. Smart water meters, smart gas meters, electric bicycle management and other applications have been deployed on a large scale. The construction of a three-dimensional urban information collection system based on IoT is being accelerated and a new platform for integration and innovation of IoT applications will be produced.
  • Consumer IoT facing the demand side. Mobile IoT, which combines IoT with the mobile internet, is innovative and highly active in cultivating large-scale consumer applications such as wearable devices, smart homes, smart hardware, and smart health care.
  1. How will China achieves the goals in the Notice?
  • Formulate a mobile IoT development roadmap, guide new IoT terminals to stop using 2G/3G networks, and promote the migration of existing 2G/3G IoT services to NB-IoT/4G/5G networks.
  • Establish a mobile IoT development index model, carry out mobile IoT development level assessment, and guide the development of mobile IoT applications and industries.
  • Consider the needs of smart applications in infrastructure construction, and reserve space for mobile IoT infrastructure construction.
  • Implement supervisory responsibilities, improve the monitoring, discovery, and disposal mechanisms of IoT harassment calls and spam messages, and guide enterprises to launch various new mobile IoT terminal products in accordance with laws and regulations.
  • Improve the guidance and resource gathering role of the National IoT Industry Demonstration Base and the Mobile IoT Industry Alliance. Strengthen the promotion of excellent cases of mobile IoT and benchmarking projects, encourage integration and innovation, and create a good policy environment.


For the Chinese version of the Notice, please see:



By Luna ZHAO on May 11,2020.